I have been operating on half a tank of energy and steam since the pregnancy nausea of #3 set in 10 weeks ago. If you’ve seen me, perhaps I looked a little bit run down. I have been feeling run over. I’ve been just trying to survive.
I have failed my own standard for keeping on top of laundry and dishes. My daughter has on more than one occasion left the house looking less than tidy. And though I’ve made it to the grocery store once a week, I NEVER want to eat ANYTHING in my house.
There is nothing worse than just trying to keep my head above water. Feeling run down and always behind is the pits. It’s depressing. Blah.
So, when I was invited to have two days away from my kids at one of the most luxurious hotels in Arizona, I had to say yes!
Miraval is located just North of Tucson at the base of some pretty spectacular mountains! I arrived on Monday morning – along with fellow SMB Contributor Noelle – and was immediately on the road to relaxation, rejuvenation and lots of time to myself!
I spent time by the pool alone watching the clouds go by! I took time just to listen to the birds singing. And I’m happy to report, that during this time of rest and relaxation, I was able to feel baby #3 kick for the very first time! 🙂
If you need a place where the food is healthy and delicious (you have GOT to try the 1st Course Portabello mushroom!), where the atmosphere is relaxed and Lululemon attire seem to be the unwritten dress code, or if you just want to taste a bit of prickly pear in your iced tea, this is the place for you.
Here’s my little review in a handy-dandy list:
What I loved:
1. No cell phone zones – all over the resort there are areas where talking on your phone is outlawed. The kind staff will ask you to please cease and desist. I loved having a little bit of help staying unplugged and knowing that I wasn’t going to be interrupted by someone else’s phone conversation.
2. Healthy (real) food – Being pregnant does change my food experience. My taste buds are on over drive. I loved having my meals prepared for me. The options were fruit, veggies, whole grain breads and the one indulgence I did see were chocolate chip cookies. And another fun aspect was that they include the nutrition information with everything they serve. I love that transparency!
3. Relaxed atmosphere – The decor and the architecture is all in a southwest pueblo-style motif. There is a man-made river complete with rocks and water features that runs through the middle of the property so the running water’s white noise provides a sound I’d like to sit by for hours. Also, they’ve planted sage and rosemary all over the property giving off a very fresh smell. Of course, my favorite aspect of the resort was that it overlooks some spectacular mountains. Were I to go again, I would request a room that overlooks them.
4. Spa – To be fair, I don’t have a lot of spa experiences under my belt. But for this novice, I felt more than comfortable by the sweet staff who were always ready to answer my questions, lend me a hand or just let me be. The spa features a quiet room that overlooks the mountains. It’s a great place for reading, napping or just waiting for your next activity.
5. Horses – They have a barn of about 14 well cared for and loved horses. Each horse, is clearly handled with love and respect. Their clean barn, arenas and trails are worth the trip themselves. I went on a morning trail ride and enjoyed seeing the desert from the back of my favorite animal! Horses for me are medicine, so I came away refreshed and ready to get back to my family full of energy!
What I didn’t love:
1. New Age philosophy – The therapeutic aspect of the resort is certainly communicated on the Miraval Website. So, it was not a surprise that many of their activities included aspects of this philosophy. I can’t agree that looking into yourself is the answer, but they did stress that it’s not selfishness they are referring to. Of course, I believe that the only way we can understand ourselves is through a relationship with God.
2. Weird smell in the main lobby – I can’t really describe it, but it reminded me of some smells I experienced while visiting Taiwan. Just not my thing.
This two day retreat was not something that I would have planned for myself because I’m so focused on what my kids and husband need. I do, like many of us, forget to take my own needs into consideration. I needed this. I needed time away to rest. I needed time to reflect on my family. I needed time with my Lord reading the Bible uninterrupted. I even needed time with a horse. Time. This is something that I am going to remember to give myself more of so that I can be a better wife and mother and so that I can be thriving and not just surviving!
How do you get time away? Have you had any R & R recently?
Just FYI: My time at Miraval was generously paid for by the folks at the resort. I was not asked or compensated to write this post, and all opinions shared are my own.